Does It Cost More to Have Vaulted Ceilings in a House?

Vaulted ceilings add height -- and cost -- to your building project.

Vaulted ceilings add height -- and cost -- to your building project.

If you've ever wanted to update your ceilings to the loftier heights of a vaulted design, or add a vaulted ceiling at the last minute to a house-in-progress, you may have balked at the cost. The project might still be worthwhile given that vaulted ceilings can add up to 25 percent to your house's resale value. Just how much opening up the space will set you back depends on variables such as what part of the country you live in and whether or not you use a contractor.

Regular vs. Vaulted Ceilings

Compared to regular flat ceilings, vaulted ceilings are a relatively pricier venture because they require more materials and if you are renovating a house rather than starting from scratch, you are talking about extra costs for knocking down structures, redoing the wiring and refinishing the result. Remodeling website Home Advisor shows that the average national cost for its members to install an unspecified type of ceiling, as of June 2013, was $1,629. Vaulted ceilings, depending on the project, can be less, or more likely, more than this figure.

Adding Vault to Home-in-Progress

America's Best Houseplans website says that to add a vaulted ceiling to a new home slated to be built, you'll be looking at about $1,325 to cover just materials alone. These could include items such as roof trusses, lumber, rough carpentry, as well as the insulation, drywall and paint. That'll be the extent of it if you build the home yourself, but add on the general contractor's fee if you're commissioning someone else to do it, and you could be singing to the tune of an additional 25 to 75 percent over the cost of materials.

Adding Vault to Existing House

Home improvement website House Logic says that turning a 20 by 20 foot room with an 8-foot ceiling into an 11- or 12-foot vaulted ceiling, could set you back by $18,000 to $25,000. It estimates that for a basic vaulting project, you'll be footing about $1,000 for structural planning and permits, another $3,700 for demolition, $3,600 to reinforce the framing and remove existing joists, nearly $3,000 for wiring and a combined $7,000 for insulation, drywalling and painting.

Variables in Cost

Extra costs could sneak into a vaulted ceiling project if your roof is built on a truss, rather than rafter, frame. Working around the criss-crossing design of the truss could add 20 to 40 percent to the cost of the ceiling. Rerouting sheet-metal ductwork also adds to the installation expense of vaulted ceilings. Also, the constitution of your plumbing pipes could mean more labor tacked onto your bill, as copper and galvanized steel pipes are peskier to move about, as opposed to plastic vent pipes.

About the Author

Timothea Xi has been writing business and finance articles since 2013. She has worked as an alternative investment adviser in Miami, specializing in managed futures. Xi has also worked as a stockbroker in New York City.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/ Images